I thought that Seth’s recent musing on restaurant service levels has something for us all to think about with regards our service offerings. He describes being offered the “worst table” in the restaurant, when he asked for an alternative table the one he pointed out was declared “reserved”…
Do you have a “worst table” that some of your customers end up with? Do you have a “best table” and how do you decide who gets that?
The bad table:
marketing dilemma: who should get your best effort? Should it be the new customer who you just might be able to convert into a long-term customer? Or should it be the loyal customer who is already valuable? Sorry, but the answer is this: you can’t have a bad table.
Here in the UK we have a great advert for Nationwide which makes similar points about customer service but from the flip-side:-
The “New Customers Only” mantra of promotions that are only available if you are a valuable (in this instance, new) customer…
Every offering, every level of service, every product you have should offer value at a level that means something to your customers new or established. It is of course the case that ‘some’ of your offerings will be objectively compared to others and found to be ‘better’.
I think the lesson here is that you shouldn’t hold back on your good stuff just in case a better customer comes along.
Technorati Tags: business growth, customer experience, innovation
Jason of 37Signals has written a passionate article on Why we disagree with Don Norman: following Don Norman’s critique of 37Signals approach to design.
I’m going to let Jason do most of the talking because he has written this so well… but to set some context… Don Norman was critiquing 37Signals for designing for themselves BEFORE designing for the customer, in fact he seems to imply he thought they weren’t designing for customers at all.
What is excellent about this posting is that Jason is spot in pointing out that the worlds best innovators and creators have all come from a position of thinking about themselves first and Jason articulates very well the speed that this allows 37Signals to design at. He also highlights that they ARE VERY customer focussed in how they then amend, iterate and improve on original thinking…
It always seems a bit strange to hear a customer experience expert say “The customer doesn’t know what they want…” but it is often true especially when you are developing propositions on the boundaries of what exists today in the mass market…
Seth Godin (The forces of mediocrity) has hit on a lesson that I think a lot of people still need to learn. “The forces FOR mediocrity” a mass movement that one must swim against in order to achieve most innovations and differentiations in a marketplace.
In my role as a coach to entrepreneurs and even as a customer experience coach I find a lot of people wanting to find the quick-hit, easy low-hanging fruit, quick-win strategy… basically… hardly any one wants to put in the hard-work. Everyone wants to be “different” or “successful” or “compelling and engaging” but they want to do it in some tried and tested AND easy way…
As Seth says “There’s a myth that all you need to do is outline your vision and prove it’s right – then quite suddenly, people will line up and support you.”
Seth points out that you will invariably encounter large amounts of resistance. Richard Branson in an interview for an upcoming technology conference is quoted as saying that the majority of the ideas for customer experience that he has had have come from his own burning desire to change things, Steve Jobs has always had a passion for making the world a better place through technology and information, he was FIRED from his own company for his vision… it ain’t necessarily easy being that innovative…
but as Seth also says “If it were any other way, everyone would do it and your work would ultimately be devalued”…
However, in the face of all this adversity, what all of the world’s most succesful people do find easy are the decision they have to make when they weigh them up against the values, inspiration and vision that they have. The vision becomes an incredibly clear compass for which direction is the right path… even when the people surrounding you are going in the opposite direction. If you have the tenacity and perserverance to get through the initial cycles of business growth around your new idea then the market you want to play in will be attracted to you, just don’t expect it overnight…
Technorati Tags: business growth, coaching, innovation, personal, platform for growth, puppy, social enterprise
Field Studies: The Best Tool to Discover User Needs
The most valuable asset of a successful design team is the information they have about their users. When teams have the right information, the job of designing a powerful, intuitive, easy-to-use interface becomes tremendously easier. When they don’t, every little design decision becomes a struggle.
Continue reading ‘UIE – Field Studies: The Best Tool to Discover User Needs’
I’m going to link you straight to the source on this one, it’s not directly from a UX source, nor is it trying to be and yet it seems strangely relevant… get lost in the comments for a while as you try to work out exactly how you would define that most elusive of environments we all try to design for “The real world”….
37Signals Blog – Define the Real World
I’d be interested to know if anyone has had success using folksonomies in a corporate environment? There is an interesting cultural shift in control that would be needed and I suspect it would take a fairly forward looking company to do it!
Continue reading ‘FoUIE – Folksonomies, a User-Driven Approach to Organizing Content’